A journalist worthy of attention

Paul Adams, veteran of the CBC and Globe and Mail, who now writes for iPolitics, makes consistently intelligent observations about the dilemma of Canada’s “progressive” opposition parties. In his book, Power Trap, and in his columns, he observes how petty tribal rivalries between the Liberals and New Democrats have blinded and crippled both parties, preventing them from effectively addressing the truly disastrous havoc that Stephen Harper and associates are inflicting upon our democracy, social fabric and environment.

In his latest article (iPolitics, May 13), Adams changes direction slightly, examining our complete lack of progress on the most pressing issue of our age: global climate disruption. He practically tears his hair out at the decades-long negligence. Not only politicians, but the rest of us as well, are culpable.

A most telling cartoon tops the piece: a balance scale containing a crowd of scientists on one side outweighed by a single climate denier on the other. A comment wafting from the scientists notes the amazing density of that one denier.

As Adams notes, early twentieth century generations sacrificed the lives of countless young people to save us from totalitarian threats. The same conscientious citizens were willing to undergo rationing of food and fuel to further the common cause. Today there is a massive outcry if the mere suggestion is raised that we make a tiny sacrifice, such as a carbon tax, to fight off the vastly more dangerous, all-engulfing threat from green house gases.

Instead, we follow oily corporate executives dangling shiny baubles before us. We’re dazzled by them, happy to bury our minds with theirs in the tar sands, mesmerized by greasy pipe dreams.

Just as I’m finishing this, I see similar sentiments in Ed Shields’ letter of May 14 in the Chronicle Journal. I agree with him. And I agree with Paul Adams when he says today’s children and their children “will look back in anger” at their predecessors who either bought into or failed to debunk the greed-glorifying myths that dominated their time.

Freda Davies

Published in The Chronicle Journal, Thunder Bay, May 17, 2014